5:43am.
Woke up this morning without alarm clock, feeling calm yet still a little tired.
This is my usual biorhythm when I behave like a good girl should in the weekends, and this is the first morning since a very long time I feel normal again.
Ah! Normality!
Blisssss!

Sweet averageness is surrounding me while I am making my coffee (the milk is júst not enough for two cups – oh well, damn, what can you do?) and while the perculator is doing its thingie on the stove (I sigh and complain because whyyyy is the damn thing always taking so long?) I roll my tobacco and leave the cigarette on the table until my coffee is ready (consider it to be some sort of rule of mine: no smoking before I’ve got my cup filled!).

And I am wondering:
‘Is this it then? Do I feel that normal about it already then?’

I am kind of disappointed, which is quite a contrast with the satisfaction and security I also feel because of, finally, having reached a state of emotional balance and neutrality.
But, you know, don’t worry yourself over it.
Because all it takes is one sip of the black brew to get me going, and I’m feeling something stirring me up again already.

And, tadaa!
Here it comes, ladies and gentlemen, the bliss of anticipation is kicking back in!
And while I am in the bathroom I feel the chuckling coming back up again.
I’m looking up at the toilet room ceiling and I’m thinking:

‘Oi! You guys up there!
You havin’ a laugh, or WHAT?!’

And I imagine my ancestral spirits giggling.

Whoa yeh.
Here we go.
Back to the excitement.
I knew I could count on it.

‘How do you like your coffee, baby?’
‘In a cup, baby’.

I am reminiscing.
What a droogkloot.

Look that up.
Google Translate is your friend.

In a cup. Okay.
Such dryness suggests he is a black coffee person.

I guess this is how a girl who is given into marriage must feel.
I actually am such a girl.
I have been given into marriage by the spirits.
You may think I’m kidding, but I am so not.
I am for real.
Trust me on that.

Who would even believe such a thing?

Ha!
I do.

Ancestral culturally put, things couldn’t be more traditional for me.

I am Mandailing.
Batak Mandailing, descendant of family Loebis, from Sumatra, Indonesia.
And this is how Mandailing people go about marriage.

I would imagine a girl who has been given into marriage to be asking of her father impatiently on a regular basis:
‘Daddy, how long must I still wait for my future husband to arrive?’,
and the number of times I have sighingly asked the spirits the same question has become countless by now.

At the moment I drift off into daydreaming at least a million times a day, and I just wander through and around the house, feeling completely lost, while I look at my belongings and wonder:

‘What would he think of this? Would he think it’s pretty?
Would he enjoy watching me wear this? And what about that?’.

I could easily spend all day picking up the items one by one, having a close look at it, and getting subsequently so totally overwhelmed by the magnificence of the situation I am finding myself in today, that I’m just lackadaisically dropping the item as soon as I picked it up.

And I sigh again.
Good God.
This is so immense.
So amazingly intense.

My things.
All my beautiful things.
Lingering around, waiting for the absolute impossible to happen.

I would also expect a girl who has been given into marriage to have met her fiancée in the flesh.
They would have had the chance to look each other in the eye at least once, no?
Maybe they even politely shook hands, under strict supervision of a parent?
Or would they have been given the opportunity to have a brief conversation in private,
with the whole family giggling of anticipation in the adjoining room?
And maybe, just maybe, she would have been so fortunate of receiving a hint from him regarding his mentality as a husband?
A secret glimpse of sexual temperament maybe, even?

A smile.
A wink.
A blush?
His hand subtly caressing her underarm’s skin?

Was I given such an opportunity?

Anything?
Anything at all?

No.
My story is better.
Much, much better.

From my memoirs ‘TOBACCO – Curse & Blessing of a Shamaness
By KiKi TOAO